With more than 175 locations nationwide and more than 35 years in the business, Car-X Auto Service has earned a prime spot in the parking garage of quality car care and customer service. Started in 1971 by a team of seasoned muffler-shop owners, the service centers have blossomed from their beginnings as specialty exhaust shops to providers of nearly any repair or maintenance service imaginable, from installing performance-enhancing accessories to treating cars to therapeutic trust falls. In addition to promoting safety and long, healthy engine life with brake services and speedy oil changes, Car-X Auto Service reaches out to the surrounding community with regular philanthropic activities, such as recycling drives and participation in the American Heart Association’s Heart Walk.
At Tuffy's, motor-vehicle caregivers spruce up patrons' horseless carriages and prepare them for a new season of dutiful service. After installing a new oil filter, auto artisans remove the old sludgy glop clogging the car's arterial system and replace it with up to 5 quarts of Valvoline 5W-30 or 5W-20 conventional motor oil (a $26.99 value, diesel or synthetic oil costs extra). The staff will also rotate tires to prepare four-wheeled wonders for safe gliding (a $12 value) and make sure air-conditioning systems function properly to bring you to the brink of coolness faster than Fonzie’s leather jacket ($9.99) . Finally, a pair of fresh wiper blades (up to 22")—grown locally by organic-blade farmers—supplants worn-out window-rubbers ($22) and a specialist conducts an extensive 41-point maintenance inspection.
Shade Tree Auto's ASE Blue Ribbon–certified technicians pamper road-weary rides with services ranging from oil changes to engine repair, and the company guarantees a two-year or 24,000-mile warranty. Road warriors seeking VIP treatment will benefit from Shade Tree's comprehensive package, which includes discounts on complete brake repair ($40 off) and computerized alignment (half off), as well as transmission and fuel-system flushes (both half off). Membership comes with three oil changes, tire rotation, wiper blades, pre-trip inspection, and a bottle of vintage bordeaux motor oil. VIP vehicles also get an A/C-system check and 10% off a wild card good for any provided service.
Each year, Acura presents the Dealership of Distinction award to its best dealerships throughout the country. Acura of Johnston was one of the dealerships recognized in 2012. Its parking lot is lined with new and certified preowned vehicles, and its work bays bustle with trained auto technicians who perform maintenance and repair work such as oil changes and details. Acura of Johnston backs its repairs with a three-year, 50,000-mile warranty, which means drivers have a chance at the coveted Indy 500 three-peat.